DAF Classics bring history to life
Nostalgia is beautiful. With two DAF De Rooy Classics, Team De Rooy is doing well in the Dakar Classics. With starting number 901 we see the famous DAF 3300 with a double cab and two engines. This truck made its debut last year.
This Dakar Classic edition, Janus van Kasteren sr., Thijs Heezen and Herman Keijsers will be driving the truck. Jan De Rooy made a big impression with this truck in the 1984 Paris-Dakar. Van Kasteren sr. and Keijsers have been following the Dakar for years. They regularly entertain us with funny reports on film. Despite being active inside the truck, they already shared their first films of this year’s Dakar. Herman Keijsers says that today’s short route was used as a test to compare their time with the target time of their class.
The Dakar Classics is a regularity competition. Compared to the normal Dakar rally, participants largely drive a different course. Keijsers: “Obviously our time was much faster than the target time. The organization asked if we wanted to start in the real race. This sounds interesting, but we won’t do that. The dream is to win both the Dakar and the Dakar Classic: Janus junior and senior on P1. Of course, that will be impossible if they both drive in the same class.”
More and more classic rally vehicles are being prepared and registered for this rally. For example, a replica of the DAF NAT 2800 was made in the workshop of Team De Rooy last year. Jan de Rooy made his Paris-Dakar debut in 1982 in a similar truck. Now it brings Hugo Duisters back into the Dakar. For years, this Belgian was a quick assistant to Jan and Gerard de Rooy. He made his debut in 1987. That year, Jan de Rooy won the rally.
Later, Duisters also experienced Gerard’s two victories. Now he adds a new experience to his rich Dakar past. The torpedo truck offers space for two people. Alternately, this place is occupied by Remco de Vos and Corné Blok. Today the honor was given to Remco. A stabilizer support appeared to have disappeared during the race. Back in the bivouac this has been fixed. Besides that minor problem, the first real kilometers with the truck went well.
Tomorrow will show the first real rally stage. The driving Dakar heritage will compete in a special stage of 219 kilometers with, among others, a classic Tatra and Pegaso. This is how the classic rally trucks bring a rich history to life.